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Monday 08 July, 2024
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Maui’s Lahaina wildfire: Extent of the destruction is shown in before and after pictures

BY Shahzad Saeed Aug 10, 2023. 07:34 pm UPDATED: Aug 10, 2023. 07:34 pm

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The heart of Maui has been hit by wildfires, leaving a trail of devastation and hopelessness. The picturesque city of Lahaina, which is located on the island’s northwest coast and has a population of roughly 13,000 people, has been completely destroyed by the blaze.

The once-thriving neighborhood has been brought to its knees due to the fatalities, injuries, and extensive destruction that have astounded both locals and onlookers. A press release states that at least 36 people have died as a result of the wildfire.

Sylvia Luke, the acting governor of Hawaii, painted a bleak picture of the situation and claimed that the flames had completely destroyed entire communities. Due to ongoing safety concerns, she pleaded with people to stay away from the affected areas. The before and after pictures that show the staggering extent of the wildfire’s reach make the scale of the devastation painfully clear.

The images vividly depict how the flames have consumed Lahaina’s very structure. Buildings that once stood proudly have been destroyed, leaving a hauntingly burned-out landscape in their wake.

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Strong winds that proved to be a formidable foe in containment efforts propelled the fires as they raced through the town. Even the historic area, which has a history that dates back to the 1700s, has not been spared by this ruthless natural force.

The Lahaina Square Shopping Center and the area around it serve as one of the most heartbreaking examples of the destruction. Satellite images reveal the extent of their devastation, demonstrating that these areas have taken the brunt of the inferno’s wrath. The once-vibrant commercial center now resembles a desolate wasteland, serving as a stark reminder of how vulnerable human structures are to the wrath of nature.

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The relentless winds brought by Hurricane Dora, which swept dangerously close to the Hawaiian islands, added to the tragedy by stoking the fires even more. There are worries that the death toll may increase given that the fires are still burning in some areas, raising doubts about the community’s future.

The wildfire not only destroyed homes and businesses but also important landmarks. The oldest living tree on Maui, located in Lahaina Banyan Court, perished in the flames. Structures that once framed the coastline were virtually destroyed at the nearby Lahaina marina.

The federal government has responded to the cries for help. To help with firefighting and rescue efforts, President Biden has mobilized crucial resources, including assistance from the Coast Guard, Navy, and Marines. As authorities struggle with the size of the task at hand, the sheer scope of the disaster has prompted a quick and thorough response.

Read more: What Sparked the Devastating Wildfires on Maui?

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